Welcome to a Snowmobiler’s Paradise
Call it darn good geographical luck or a heckuva blessing from the Snow Gods, but Gaylord, Michigan’s got dibs on the sweetest snowmobiling in the state. Our dead-center position in the tip of the mitt means the sky above blows in big – no, make that behemoth-blizzards of lake-effect snowfall all winter long, plus the city sits in the middle of a snowmobile network that runs more than 500 miles across eight counties. In other words, ladies and gentlemen, start your engines!
With Gaylord as your central hub to explore from, visitors and locals alike venture out in every direction. From our county lines, riders have the convenience of jumping on popular Trail #7 that runs straight up the middle of our beautiful state, connecting into the Upper Peninsula with a quick transfer from Bridge Authority. Not feeling quite that adventurous? Maybe Trail #4 is more your style – start out by branching west and meandering through the quaint communities of East Jordan and Mancelona. If you’re up for it, point your compass east and follow trails through Johannesburg and Lewiston that zigzag north into Millersburg and Onaway. And don’t forget about our friends in the untamed forests surrounding Frederic and Grayling to the south.
You can ride out your door from more than a dozen Gaylord area accommodations, but if you’re hauling your sled to the trail, park your truck and/or trailer at one of our staging areas (designated with a P on our map) to begin your ride.
Snowmobile Trail Report
January 30, 2023 – 1:15 p.m.
Every inch counts and our snow conditions keep improving! We received about 3 – 4 inches of fresh snow over the weekend, which left a nice cover over the trails. Groomers have been running and trails to the north and west are in good condition; trails to the east and south are rated as fair. Starting on Thursday, groomers will be out to keep up all the trails for our Michigan Snowmobile Festival! The extended forecast shows a possibility for snow showers throughout the week.
As always, check back with us for updates and weather reports.
Popular Trails & Mileage
From Gaylord, you can go pretty much anywhere in northern lower Michigan. Serious sled heads are fanatics for the North Central State Trail, running from Gaylord to Mackinaw City. The trail, a former railroad corridor, stretches north for 62 gorgeous and groomed miles through forest, farms and villages, all the way to the Straits of Mackinac. This scenic trail is open to snowmobiling December 1 through March 31 (weather permitting, of course). The new trailhead is located on the north side of Main Street (M-32), just across from our Visitor’s Center. Additional parking can be found north of downtown Gaylord on Fairview Road, right across from the Soccer complex.
Don’t miss another well-known trail, the North Branch, starting on Old 27 South across from Extreme Power Sports. The North Branch is a never-ending story of snowmobiling, funneling riders south to Kalkaska’s beautiful Blue Bear Trail, west to the deeply forested Jordan Valley, east to Lewiston’s Lovells Trail, plus numerous connector trails and free-range National Guard lands that are open to riding. Parking is easy at Mama Leone’s, where you can also grab a bite to eat before or after your trek.
Print out the quick reference guide for planning your snowmobile trip in and around the Gaylord area.
Michigan Snowmobile Festival
Thank you to our sponsors: Sled Shed – Shirt Sponsor; Extreme Power Sports – Food Sponsor; The Natural at Beaver Creek – Advertising Sponsor; Sledhouse Snowmobile Rentals – Eagles Hall Sponsor; County Wide Adventures – Registration Sponsor; John Taylor, Painting – Decoration Sponsor
Through Downtown Gaylord
Visitors should be aware that even though we encourage snowmobilers to visit our downtown area, sidewalks are strictly for pedestrians. The City of Gaylord Police regulate this law and tickets will be given. You can get within one block of downtown using the trail, so please park your sled and walk the rest of the way. A new downtown trailhead has been completed and provides ample parking for sleds and easy access to everything downtown has to offer.
Crossing Main Street
Snowmobiles may not cross Main Street between the railroad tracks to the west and Elm Street to the east. The snowmobile trail crosses Main Street at the railroad tracks.
Travel Within The City
Snowmobiles may travel no faster than 10 MPH on city side streets. For your safety, no travel is allowed on M-32 (Main Street) or Old 27.
Boathouse Marine and Powersports
3819 Old 27 South – Gaylord
Beaver Creek Properties – Rentals for Guests Only
5004 West Otsego Lake Dr.
County Wide Adventures
1050 S. Wisconsin Ave – Gaylord
Indian River Sports Center
562 S. Straits Hwy – Indian River
2370 S. Otsego Ave – Gaylord
Michigan Snowmobile Trail Rules & Regulations
Follow the link above to check out snowmobile trail rules and regulations for Michigan. You can also find out where to obtain Trail Permits and Trail Safety information.
Purchase your DNR e-License here.